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Prime Minister's Office>Cabinet Decisions taken on 9 April

Cabinet Decisions taken on 9 April

1. Cabinet has taken note that further to the Note Verbale sent to the British Government to protest against the establishment of the Marine Protected Area around the Chagos Archipelago, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade has also written to the following personalities to apprise them of our concern and seek their support on our position on the issue -
(a) the Right Hon William Hague, MP, Shadow Foreign Minister of Conservative Party, United Kingdom;
(b) the Hon Edward Davey, MP, Shadow Foreign Minister of Liberal Democratic Party, United Kingdom; and
(c) the Hon Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration and Chairman of Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group, Republic of Ghana.

2. Cabinet has taken note that, for the year 2010, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Human Resources would continue to have recourse to the services of Supply Teachers enrolled in 2009 to palliate shortages in scarcity areas and to replace Educators proceeding on leave. Cabinet has also taken note of the situation regarding the regularization of the cases of the 29 Supply Teachers whose services have been enlisted for the last 15 years.

3. Cabinet has taken note of the report of a Study on Environmentally Sensitive Areas in Mauritius and Rodrigues. The objective of the Study was to demarcate and draw up an inventory of all environmentally sensitive areas with a view to developing a comprehensive policy and a legal and management framework for the protection and maintenance of those areas. The Study identified 14 main types of environmentally sensitive areas in Mauritius and Rodrigues, such as coral reefs, sea grass beds, mangroves, inter-tidal mudflats, sand beaches and dunes, and coastal freshwater marshlands.

4. Cabinet has taken note of the findings of the National Non-Communicable Diseases (NCD) Survey carried out in 2009 by the Ministry of Health and Quality of Life, in collaboration with the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute of Australia; the Cardiology Department, Umea University Hospital of Sweden; the Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, St Mary’s Hospital, UK; the Imperial College, UK; and the National Public Health Institute of Helsinki, Finland. The overall objective of the survey was to determine the prevalence of Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, cardio-vascular diseases and their associated risk factors in persons aged 20 to 74 years
with a view to formulating policies for the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases. The survey indicates that, amongst the population aged between 25 to 74 years, –
(a) the prevalence of diabetes was 23.6%; hypertension 37.9%; elevated cholesterol 34.7%; and current smoking 21.7%, i.e., 3.7% women and 40.3% men;
(b) based on the European Body Mass Index, about 50.9% Mauritians were considered to be either overweight or obese;
(c) 48.5% Mauritians, i.e., 33.8% women and 65.9% men, consumed alcohol at least once weekly; and
(d) 56.2% did not practise any physical activity.

5. Cabinet has taken note that, following the promulgation of the Public Health (Restrictions on Tobacco Products) Regulations in November 2008 to protect people from tobacco smoke and reduce access to tobacco products, there has been a significant decrease in the importation of tobacco.
Cabinet has further taken note that consumption of cigarettes has decreased from 175,100,200 in January 2009 to 92,660,200 in January 2010.

6. Cabinet has taken note of the status in the award of accreditation certificates to medical laboratories by the Mauritius Accreditation Service (MAURITAS). Accreditation to international standards is the process by which formal recognition is given to a conformity assessment body for its technical competence in carrying out specific tasks.

7. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the Textile Forum on the theme “State of the Mauritian Textile and Clothing Sector and the Way Forward” organised by Enterprise Mauritius on 18 and 19 March 2010. The objectives of the Forum were to:-
(a) re-examine key challenges facing the Textile and Clothing Sector, especially in the post-crisis era;
(b) provide participants with up-to-date insights on trends on the global apparel market, including consumer behaviour, sourcing strategies and evolution of key markets for Mauritius; and
(c) provide a platform to industry operators to brainstorm on the “in-factory factors” that need to be addressed with a view to enhancing the competitiveness of our industry.

8. Cabinet has taken note that the University of Mauritius would, from 26 to 30 July 2010, hold an International Conference on Pure and Applied Chemistry (ICPAC-2010) on the theme “Chemistry for Sustainable Development”. The Conference would enable local and foreign participants conducting research in Chemistry
to –
(a) share ideas in the application of sustainable actions in their research;
(b) develop collaborations for research;
(c) identify solutions to problems and challenges facing the world, particularly in cases of food and energy crises; and
(d) develop inter-university links.

9. Cabinet has taken note of the outcome of the mission of the Minister of Social Security, National Solidarity and Senior Citizens Welfare & Reform Institutions on 27 and 28 March 2010 to Spain where she participated in the Fifth Annual International Encounter of African and Spanish Women for a Better World. The following issues were discussed at the Encounter -
(a) Women’s Human Rights and Citizenship;
(b) Economic Growth in Africa;
(c) Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights; and
(d) Education, Culture and Development.